Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 10, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-63

(The post for today didn't work out. I had to trash it. You will have to talk to each other instead.)

Only news & views related to the Ukraine conflict ...

The open thread for other stuff is here.

Posted by b on May 10, 2022 at 17:43 UTC | Permalink

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Hard to tell what's happening here yet, but it looks like the Ukraine might be unilaterally cutting off Russian gas supplies to western Europe:

Posted by: El Tweedie | May 10 2022 17:48 utc | 1

Finely it happens... Ukraine is stopping the flow of gas to EU flowing through Lugansk. 1/3 of the
gas delivered to EU. I wonder what that has for effect in Brussels.

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 17:52 utc | 2

@DutchZ | May 10 2022 17:52 utc | 2

I hope that these events will be the final nail in the coffin of the EU. It is an evil organisation. And yes, take down NATO as well.

Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 17:54 utc | 3

Ya' gotta' love consistency. Virtually all U$A MSM, following the same BS stories about Ukraine, with absolutely no mention of the U$A's culpability in starting, and continuing the war...

Posted by: vetinLA | May 10 2022 17:54 utc | 4

As the pumping stations are falling in Luhansk hands Ukrainians are cutting off deliveries. This is further going to put Germans and other Europeans under pressure. I predict that very soon Germans will start “stealthy” tests of NS2. This can literally make Biden drop dead.

Posted by: Milos | May 10 2022 17:54 utc | 5

The Gas Supply story is confusing - because if Kiev wants to force a EU crisis then cutting off this one pipeline won’t do it.

1) there are a bunch of pipelines
2) the EU is filling up its storage prepping for winter, so they have months to fill up storage tanks. ( plus EU won’t make mistake they made last winter of not filling their storage tanks to full capacity )

Posted by: Exile | May 10 2022 17:55 utc | 6

Any news on this from the Saker?
The Ukrainians have pushed the boat out.
On who's advice?

Posted by: Jpc | May 10 2022 17:55 utc | 7

What now, is Ukraine, the most corrupt country in Europe, now sanctioning Europe? I guess Scholz didn't kiss elenski's ring to his satisfaction. (formerly known as Anonymouse)

Posted by: Quid me vexari? | May 10 2022 17:56 utc | 8


Posted by: Hammer_09 | May 10 2022 18:02 utc | 9

when bullshit goes off the scale

here below/at the link, A. Martyanov is referring to Lt. General Keith Kellog, who recently appeared as a professional liar, I mean ex-military man/expert, on Fox news

"....So, he better resign himself to this US war record of the last 70 years and face the truth. While it may be too late for him due to his age, he still has the time (God bless his soul and I sincerely wish him long and healthy years) to update himself on how Russia fights real wars and why she manged to pacify Chechnya, demolish in 72 hours "NATO trained" and equipped Georgian Army, how Russia decisively defeated ISIS and saved Bashar Assad government in Syria and how she now annihilates VSU and Nazi forces in 404.

All this just in the last 20 some years. I know, comparisons are not only warranted but they are irresistible and that hurts. I am not going to comment on his utter BS "interpretation" of Putin's speech. Evidently embarrassing themselves and parading themselves as buffoons is a new Modus Operandi of all those military "experts" in US MSM. Professional envy is a powerful drug."

Posted by: michaelj72 | May 10 2022 18:04 utc | 10


🇷🇺🇺🇦 The special forces of the DPR army tracked down the headquarters of one of the artillery units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Donetsk direction. After waiting for their commanders to gather at headquarters, an ATGM was struck. After the surviving Ukrainians running out of the headquarters turned out to be naked, it became clear what their gunners were doing at meetings. Now the world community will accuse our side of mass killing of LGBT people.

Posted by: Hammer_09 | May 10 2022 18:06 utc | 11

Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 17:54 utc | 3
I absolutely agree with you.
In the mean time Brusels is presuring Hungary to agree with the Oilban. How strong is the spine
of Orban?
Lithuainia is exploding with Russia-hate after so many years being included in the USSR.
Lithuania’s parliament, the Seimas, unanimously passed a resolution on Tuesday accusing Russia of genocide and terrorism in Ukraine
I would have expected that from Poland.

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 18:10 utc | 12

My first post here, but I have been reading this blog for many years. Thank you Bernhard for all the work that you do!
That said, I would love to be a fly spying on what Zelensky, Stoltenberg, Soros, and the Biden regime talk about behind closed doors. In particular, I would like to know what the F*** Zelensky is thinking! Other than his echo chamber, does Zelensky not realise that Ukraine has no friends? Why would he alienate his only "friend" Brussels by:

*Threatening them with "let me in or else" rhetoric?
*Being rude when demanding aid from EU?

I wonder if the average Western sheeple are aware of Ukrainian grain trucks exporting precious grains to the EU, but still crying about "great famine?!?" My guess is no, because I still see and hear appeals for donations to the Red Cross Ukrainian relief fund.

Posted by: Dick Lenning | May 10 2022 18:12 utc | 13

Finely it happens... Ukraine is stopping the flow of gas to EU flowing through Lugansk. 1/3 of the gas delivered to EU. I wonder what that has for effect in Brussels.

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 17:52 utc | 2

Brussels (and the Five Eyes) will blame Russia, of course, and defend 404. As always.

Posted by: malenkov | May 10 2022 18:14 utc | 14

I've got something to say about the very first sentence of Putin's v-day speech:

Fellow Russian citizens, Dear veterans, Comrade soldiers and seamen, sergeants and sergeant majors, midshipmen and warrant officers, Comrade officers, generals and admirals, I congratulate you on the Day of Great Victory!

Maybe that opening bores the heck out of you, but it strikes my ear as the reverse order of what you'd hear from an orator in USA. As if the people rank first, elsewhere.

Another observation: Possibly Bernhard's greatness is related to his reticence. I need to follow the master's example, learning when to crumple something up for the dust bin.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 10 2022 18:18 utc | 15

A most interesting development.

So will Germany now certify "NORD Stream X" in ................?

Posted by: Bad Deal Motors On | May 10 2022 18:19 utc | 16

Cutting off some gasflow to the EU must effect Ukro self, because they are getting paid by Russia
for transporting the gas through Ukro, I think. Who knows?

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 18:22 utc | 17

RT appears to be down for the second day running, I live in the UK, are other people able to access it?

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 18:24 utc | 18

Sorry: I have to play catch up on this four-oh-four business. The entomologist in me -- possibly also the etymologist -- wants to know how "404" came to signify "Ukraine".

A quick search reveals discussion of a biolab in "Pit 404" of the Azovstal complex. Is this a related "404"? Is this numerical slang just a MoA thing?


Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 10 2022 18:26 utc | 19

Posted by: Bad Deal Motors On | May 10 2022 18:19 utc | 16

That would be very nice... This world is full with unexpected posibilities. Whats next?

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 18:27 utc | 20

@May 10 2022 18:24 utc | 18
No problem accessing RT here. Sputniknews is blocked since a couple of weeks.

Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:28 utc | 21

Here is the view of the whole Ukraine situation from the hearts of three women. Mariupol citizens explain their feeling about Russia, Ukraine, Victory in Great Patriotic War and freedom. Video

Posted by: JT Nous | May 10 2022 18:31 utc | 22

Saker reporting Ukraine is going to halt 1/3 of gasflow to Europe:

Posted by: vector | May 10 2022 18:31 utc | 23

@Aleph_Null | May 10 2022 18:26 utc | 19

Sorry: I have to play catch up on this four-oh-four business. The entomologist in me -- possibly also the etymologist -- wants to know how "404" came to signify "Ukraine".

404 is the internet code for a page that is not found, e.g.

Ukraine may soon not be found, hence 404.

Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:31 utc | 24

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 18:24 utc | 18

RT & Spunik are blocked in NL. I go via VPN-Georgia to connect to them.

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 18:31 utc | 25

@ Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:28 utc | 21

Sputnik news is down here too.

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 18:33 utc | 26

As mentioned, there're multiple gas pipelines running into Europe, with Southern, Southeastern Europe getting the most direct, uninterrupted supply provided they pay in rubles. Weather in Nothern Europe is turning balmy, 6-20C in Berlin for the next week that will continue warming. So, gas for heating homes isn't as critical now as it was 2-3 months ago. What the cut in supply does do it limit industry and thus threatens jobs and the economy. I presume the pipeline being discussed by media is the Soyuz line, not the Brotherhood line.

IMO, the decision to reduce the flow was made in Washington, so it must be aimed at Germany and Northern Europe. The attempt by EU to impose an EU-wide embargo on Russian oil imports failed, so this move might be tied to that failure to further destabilize Europe.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 10 2022 18:33 utc | 27

@karlof1 | May 10 2022 18:33 utc | 26

IMO, the decision to reduce the flow was made in Washington, so it must be aimed at Germany and Northern Europe. The attempt by EU to impose an EU-wide embargo on Russian oil imports failed, so this move might be tied to that failure to further destabilize Europe.

Agreed. The main enemy of European countries is in Washington DC.

Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:37 utc | 28

I think this amount is only $4 billion short of the USA's entire infrastructure/housing budget, what is the average American thinking about this, God only knows.

The United States is set to ramp up weapons delivery to Ukraine, deepening its involvement in the simmering war in defiance of repeated warnings by arch-foe Russia.

"A report in Associated Press (AP), quoting sources close to Congressional Democrats, said the Congress might vote on Tuesday to boost President Joe Biden’s requested $33 billion Ukraine aid package to nearly $40 billion.

Biden on Monday signed a bill into law aimed at streamlining the process for getting military assistance to Ukraine as Russian forces continue to make rapid advances in the former Soviet republic.

"I'm signing a bill that provides another important tool in our efforts to support the government of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people in their fight to defend their country and their democracy against (Russian President Vladimir) Putin's brutal war -- and it is brutal," Biden said.

“We cannot afford delay in this vital war effort,” he hastened to add, stressing that the bill needs to be finalized as soon as possible."

Posted by: Republicofscotland | May 10 2022 18:37 utc | 29

No problem accessing RT here in the U.S.

Posted by: Lysias | May 10 2022 18:39 utc | 30

RT reports that Ukraine's first president - Leonid Kravchuk (88) - has died “after a long illness”

Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:39 utc | 31

MarkU (18).

It been a week since I was able to access RT, I think its now blocked.

You should be able to view RT here.

And here.

Though I prefer the format that is now blocked, I can't access Sputnik news either.

Here is a link to Tass news which is still available and quite informative on the SMO.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | May 10 2022 18:42 utc | 32

Posted by: karlof1 | May 10 2022 18:33 utc | 26

I admire your knowledge on the matter and your geopolitical insight. I am as always learning a lot
in this blog.

What would be the cost/benefit for the US/UK to ruin the German economy. Pressure Ger. to stop the oil and cause more damage? Denmark and Sweden/Finland NL maybe are following the Brussels oilban.

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 18:44 utc | 33

I suggest using Novorossiya for the eastern and southern parts of 404 Russia has liberated and Malorossiya for the eastern and northern parts of 404 when Russia liberates them. I assume many if not most here know the reason for those designations.

Posted by: The Rev. David R. Gr | May 10 2022 18:47 utc | 34

Aleph_Null | May 10 2022 18:26 utc | 19
how "404" came to signify "Ukraine".

This came from an error code on web servers. When a web server is given the address of a non existing page, the standard error code it returns to signify that the page is not found is "Error 404".
Extrapolate to Ukraine and you get the idea.
Of course now that they are cutting the flow of gas to Europe, we may consider calling them 502: Bad Gateway!
A while after the supply of gas is cut off and reserves run out, we will probably think about calling the EU 503: Service Unavailable.
Or when Macron was calling Putin all the time asking him to let the Azov guys out, he was just 400: Bad Request

I hope it's clearer now.

Posted by: CPY | May 10 2022 18:48 utc | 35

Ukraine may soon not be found, hence 404.
Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:31 utc | 23

Thanks for your response. I've gotten 404 web-pages before, of course, but really, that's all there is to it? I notice Martyanov also observes this national nickname... as I ponder the question of who might have first coined it.

In my own insignificant opinion, it sounds like a lame joke, but I don't listen to AM for his sense of humor...

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 10 2022 18:48 utc | 36

@ Republicofscotland | May 10 2022 18:42 utc | 31

Thanks for the links, I agree about the format. The level of censorship in what was once described as 'the free world' is scary.

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 18:51 utc | 37

404 is the internet code for a page that is not found, e.g. Ukraine may soon not be found, hence 404.

Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:31 utc | 23

Correct. The first time I came across that amusing shorthand was on The Saker site. Dmitry Orlov was the author. Not sure if he was the one who started it.

Posted by: Opport Knocks | May 10 2022 18:53 utc | 38

For Karlof1 (26) and others interested in the Russian pipelines this illustration is quite good.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | May 10 2022 18:55 utc | 39

A man who was in Ukraine is on French radio talking about the Azov battalion's war crimes. My French is not that great but he claims to have seen the militants shooting Russian soldiers in the knee as well as outright killing captured officers by shooting them in the head. He claims to also have plenty of videos of these war crimes which were being carried out systematically.

Posted by: eyeswideopen | May 10 2022 18:56 utc | 40

@ Posted by: Norwegian | May 10 2022 18:28 utc | 21

Could be a DNS ISSUE ?

I have set both the Windoze/RPI400 computerS and router to use the very fast cloud fare ones. So far this has proven very reliable.

Posted by: Bad Deal Motors On | May 10 2022 18:59 utc | 41

UN Receiving Credible Reports of Ukraine Torture of Russian Troops

No mention of Ukra-nazis torturing and killing their own "sympathizers" yet. Also this story was buried way down on the page, of course.

And then they decide to dedicate most of the print to alleged Russian "atrocities" and other "illegal" acts (yet inconveniently, no accusations of torture):

The presser accused Russia of multiple war crimes, including targeting civilians, raping women and forcing civilians to leave Ukraine and go to Russia.

Bogner says the U.N. has found at least 204 cases in which Ukrainians, overwhelmingly men, have been taken by Russian forces to Belarus before arriving at Russia for pre-detention trials.

I also read today that the UN agreed to replace Russia with Chechia on the "human rights" Council. With that, we can expect the information blackout on Ukrainian war crimes to ramp up even further. Pulling out all the stops to make "news" (and the history books to come) as one-sided as possible in condemning Russia while 'saint-ifying' Ukra-Nazis.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 10 2022 19:03 utc | 42

Russian forces used Kinzhal missiles overnight to strike targets in Odessa. I hope they included some heavy U.S. weaponry stash. Whatever it takes; crush it, smash it, incinerate it; I don't care just blow it to kingdom come in all directions!

American tax payers may as well just dig a hole in their back yard, designate it Ukraine, throw all their hard-earned cash into the money pit, light a fuse, toss it in, tie a Ukraine flag to a skewer, roast marshmallows with it and watch their future go up in flames.

Posted by: Circe | May 10 2022 19:04 utc | 43

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 18:24 utc | 18

You should try a proxy service (VPN) that allows you to access the Internet from a different (non-EU or UK) country. RT is working fine for me in Houston and has never been down or blocked since the operation started. I use IPVanish and it seems to work pretty well (and fast).

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 10 2022 19:05 utc | 44

Hi B, I wonder how the Turkish compain in Iraq is going on?

Posted by: A.S. | May 10 2022 19:06 utc | 45

@ Tom_Q_Collins | May 10 2022 19:05 utc | 43

Thanks for the advice.

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 19:07 utc | 46

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 19:07 utc | 45

Let us know if you end up having success trying other means? My post might have been confusing as well. I do use IPVanish for things like hiding my location and some piracy (I refuse to pay for HBO Max or Apple TV+), but I haven't needed it yet to access RT or other Russian 'state-affiliated media.'

I'm going to get on my personal laptop in just a sec and see if I can access those sites using a UK IP address w/ IPVanish.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 10 2022 19:12 utc | 47

Really don't mean to stir shit with this post - just a twenty-something with zero qualifications in this area trying to make sense of what's going on:

As someone with no military experience and understanding beyond what is sometimes shown in movies and video games (which probably has zero relationship to reality) and what is sometimes written about in this blog and others (which I can't really verify beyond "is it logical?" since I don't know anything) I cannot make heads or tails out of the news coming out of and about the war in Ukraine. Just as some people are 100% assured of Russian victory some other people are 100% assured of Ukranian victory - among the German websites I tend to visit from time to time it's way easier to find pro-U stances than pro-R, and Chinese commentators I know and read (chinahand & Carl Zha mostly) tend to think the opposite way.

The Ukraine open threads on MoA attract a lot of comments that regularly link everything and the kitchen sink to this conflict and the sheer volume of posts makes it hard to keep up, but the more I read here the less I know.

What kind of "indicators" are there that are speaking for one outcome and against the other? Beyond the basic sanity checks ("The Ukies have already killed 100 thousand Russians!" "China will backstab Russia any second now! Right after Russia goes bankrupt!"). I know it's impossible to get accurate info due to the nature of war but sometimes it feels to me that everyone's just talking out of their asses to pass the time (not this fine blog of course - it's been more right than wrong throughout the past so it must be doing something right).

Is there some kind of job-/life-experience that allows to see through this mess to some extent or is everything just pure speculation from some more and some less credentialed and qualified commentators? Not looking for the simple and golden solution here, but just rough guidelines that are likely to lead to correct conclusions more often than to wrong ones.

Posted by: pachinko | May 10 2022 19:13 utc | 48

Apologies for the multi-posts on the matter, but I did just switch PCs, signed into my VPN and set it to a UK IP address (Manchester, and was able to access just fine. Anyone having issues might ask your ISP what's going on, because it doesn't seem like there's a nationwide blackout in the UK from my experience.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 10 2022 19:15 utc | 49

Bojo pays a visit to Kiev and the comedian shuts a gas line...

karlof1 - map here showing the affected line.
"Ukraine stops gas transit through the "Sohranivka" gas pipeline system..."

Posted by: Peter AU1 | May 10 2022 19:18 utc | 50

Norwegian @27 & DutchZ @32--

Thanks for your replies. As Hudson details, the Outlaw US Empire wants to make the EU as economically dependent upon it as possible as more of the world exits the dollar zone. By now it ought to be very clear that all EU technocrats are under the control of Washington and will stab any/all EU nations in the back to get their--Washington's--way. And by Washington, read Wall Street.

Yesterday, Dr. Hudson was the guest in a podcast hosted by Ben Norton and his new site, Multipolarista, which can be seen via this link at the Saker's. Hudson sketched the overall Neoliberal/Outlaw US Empire strategy that he's covered more in-depth in other interviews and papers that can be found at his website, these two being the most important, "America Defeats Germany for the Third Time in a Century", and "The Dollar Devours the Euro", although they aren't the only ones as you'll see. Germany is the economic engine feared by the Anglo-Americans since Bismarck unified Germany and subjugated France in 1870, and this is now the third war being waged on it by that combination. But none of this is in the interest of any ordinary European, meaning the EU is essentially a 5th Column organization working with NATO to enslave Europe to US & UK Finance Capitalism.

Russia's SMO to liberate Ukraine is being used as a tool by the Outlaw Anglo-American Empire to sever Russia from Europe and by extension from China, too. That was the goal of making Ukraine and as much of the former Soviet Bloc into an Anti-Russia as possible. The overall policy goal was to also emasculate Russia, but that aspect has failed spectacularly as has the concomitant aspect to cutoff China from Europe.

As we move forward, Russia cannot afford to have any NATO nation abutting its borders, nor can it realistically have a Fascist EU as a neighbor. In the same vein, if Europeans want their freedom, they must overturn the EU and NATO. Thus, there appears to be common ground between Russia and most Europeans--that's why the insane levels of Russophobia to prevent that alignment. The Ukraine issue will be solved, but this other greater issue will remain to be solved, which is why I advocate for Russia to drive on Brussels and free Europe once again.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 10 2022 19:20 utc | 51

The BBC currently airing the semi-finals of the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest, who'd bet against Ukraine winning it.

I think I recall if memory serves an anti-Russian song from which country I can't recall winning it a few of years ago, this years winner is sure to be rerun of that I think.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | May 10 2022 19:23 utc | 52
Real or fake? You be the judge… it’s unconfirmed for now, one has spotted a 1 over he last digit of the 2022 markdown.

Posted by: Mathew Palmieri | May 10 2022 19:32 utc | 53

A lot of pro-Ukrainians are starting to believe that Russia will soon start running out certain critical weapons like Kalibrs and Iskanders. Don't know whether or not this is true, but I doubt it. Doesn't enter their brains that Russia might share technology with China to allow China to manufacture weapons for Russia. China and Russian will be dumb about this, unlike Washington and London which are dumb about making public statements about their weapons supplies. Historic precedent is UK supplied technical knowledge to US during WWII.

China will want to see Russia achieving its full objectives in Ukraine now that Washington is claiming it can't allow Moscow to win. Another important step on the road to a multipolar world.

BTW, I don't know if Mongolia has entered the sanctions regime against Russia but there is a railway line from China t6o Russia that goes through territory where the government hates Washington and London far more than it hates Moscow and Beijing. I strongly doubt the old "my enemy's enemy is my friend" routine will work with North Korea.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | May 10 2022 19:33 utc | 54

Posted by: Tom Pfotzer | May 9 2022 17:22 utc | 14

Tom - my apologies for a delayed response. Life intervenes.

As bevin posted, that listing was a starting point and there can be much debate over the relevant factors. I sought to demonstrate that many of the factors leading to American dominance post WWII are no longer operative.

My perspective is based on world-systems theory although this is a misnomer. To my mind a "system" is an engineered structure (an offshore oil rig), or a series of structures (an offshore rig, a pipeline system, a refinery system, a marketing and distribution system, and a human capital system all of it connected to and dependent upon a demand system (an industrial society dependent on fossil fuel energy.)

The problem is that while we may describe these elements as "systems," they are not in fact engineered rational "systems." Immanuel Wallerstein described a field of study which he called world systems theory. Key to his work is the understanding that at a certain level the "structure" departs from being a planned rationalist engineered entity and begins to take on a life of its own. It begins to function as a form of living organism and becomes unpredictable.

A mariner can examine a ship's plan and tell you how long it can voyage before it runs out of fuel, how long it will take to sink, what sea state will result in a capsize, or severe structural damage. At one level the "system" can be known. At a greater level of complexity the system cannot be known as it becomes impossible to "know" the present state of each component entity. The required knowledge cannot be reduced to a series of mechanical statistics as the mind of the individual operator must also be taken into account. Think of the impact of Zelensky on the ship of state vs Putin vs Brandon.

Much depends on how you wish to interpret history and what factors are identified as critical change agents. You can argue that it was British ingenuity and capitalist pluck that resulted in the Industrial Revolution (IR). The dates are debatable as is the question of 1 or 2 successive IR, or that the IR never ended - the contemporary period being the culmination of processes originating in the initial exploitation of fossil fuels.

You can also argue the IR was a fortuitous accident. Some villagers discovered a seam of sea coal and used it warm their dwellings in winter. The UK approached full deforestation such that ship and construction timber had to be sourced from the Baltic's and Canada. In essence there was a wood crisis which drove up the price of fuel and initiated a search for substitute forms of energy. Coal was an option but its take up would have been hindered were it not for the fact that no part of the UK is more than 30 miles from a navigable waterway and water transport was then, and remains, the lowest cost mode of transport. At the same time the enclosure acts had driven the peasant class off the land creating a significant pool of surplus labour which could be hired at bare survival wages to dig canals, work the coal face, or labour in an emergent factory system. These factors (available coal, internal and external water transport, significant labour surplus) were unique to the UK and not easily replicated elsewhere.

Prior to the IR there had been a steady migration of surplus rural population into the cities where most perished due to the cesspool created when night soil (excrement and urine) was simply tossed out the bedroom window into the streets below. The discovery of the relation between sanitation and human health coupled with the advent of steam driven pumping engines resulted in municipal water supplies of reasonable quality such that London, whose population had remained largely static for scores of decades despite high in-migration, began to grow. This growth in turn created demand for food and other necessities shipped into the city by the canal and ship system. This sparked a trading relationship between centre and periphery. The periphery barely survived while the centre vastly profited and this relationship has continued up until the Facebook-Apple-Google present.

The point I am attempting to make is that our historical explanations may be biased; they favour "great minds," "great men," and "great innovation" occurring in "great nations" when the actual explanation may be a fortuitous accidental combination of factors too mundane to make it into the history books. I have yet to see a history of human shit.

In my prior post I mentioned the longue durée. This analytic system provokes a long term view of human development and centres its explanations on cultural patterns embedded in the "world view" and outlook of any group of people. These "world views" may be incongruent with reality and it may require a "system shock" to make this fact "visible," known, and generally accepted. It is possible our present emphasis on technological advance is incongruent with physical reality and the maximum carrying capacity of the planet. This calls your emphasis on technological solutions into question.

It is also highly likely that the economic relationship between centre and periphery that developed in parallel with industrialization may be inappropriate to the survival of our species. As you asert, Europe may contain a vast reservoir of historical wealth. But I suspect much of this wealth is fully invested and earning a return; it cannot be applied toward novel solutions without divestiture of present holdings. Such a shift in finance from present high profit rent seeking to unproven and speculative "green" investment may occur slowly, if at all.

To bring this back to Ukraine, I think it fair to say we are witnessing the actions of the US attempting to protect its "world empire" and the equally consequential effects of RF making the claim that a state which operates by suborning the democratic process to advance its own interests, demonstrates total contempt for recognized international law, and maintains its world-empire via lying, cheating and stealing (see ) operates as an agent of chaos and therefore constitutes a fundamental threat to the security of all peoples. The G77 appear to support the RF and the fact many readers of this blog will be unaware of the existence of the G77 and its 134 member states ( ) demonstrates the degree to which we remain imprisoned within a debilitating false consciousness which operates to the benefit of one dominant entity. We have nothing to lose but our chains.

One final note of caution. Beware doctrinaire Marxism. First because there is the question of which Marx, and which theory, and second, as anyone who has managed a software team will testify, there is a significant degree of discomfort in watching your means of production exit the building every night.

Posted by: Sushi | May 10 2022 19:36 utc | 55

Well, well..

The US is escalating EU downfall more and more via their puppet Z...

There is an unused pipe laying in the baltic sea ready to be used. Just turn it on and sell the excess gas to poland, romania and other countries in eastern europe...

Sure I am a dreamer...the coward Scholz will never make such bold move...

It is going to be a dark and cold winter in Europe soon.

Posted by: Rasta | May 10 2022 19:42 utc | 56

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 10 2022 18:48 utc | 35

In my own insignificant opinion, it sounds like a lame joke, but I don't listen to AM for his sense of humor...

Yes, it sounds lame in English, but in Russian does not: it is a pun.
In Russian language the word for page and for country is the same: strana.

Posted by: hopehely | May 10 2022 19:50 utc | 57

Posted by: pachinko | May 10 2022 19:13 utc | 47

Nobody really knows anything, me included. There’s better up to the minute coverage on telegram, but that still requires some sifting. We’re all using some combination of experience and education to make sense out of it. But we all may fall into our own conceits and pet theories too.

On the conflict itself, common sense gets you as good a read as anything. If Ukraine was winning a there would be wall-to-wall coverage of its smashing Russian forces; there probably wouldn’t need to be constant supply of more weapons; the west wouldn’t be talking about Russia’s aggression but the price it was paying for it.

On the subsequent geopolitical shakeup, we really don’t know. Mostly because it’s clearly going to be a time of instability. IMO, when reading people’s opinions on major events look for whether they seem overly confident in their analysis and how they handle criticism of it. Good analysts mostly talk about potential outcomes and categorize them as (roughly) possible, probable or likely. A big one here has been Europe’s future. Mostly the discussion has been too broad as if Europe is monolithic, but take reduced energy from Russia and its impact. Is it possible europe can withstand it, yes absolutely. The question that needs to be answered is whether each response it has is probable in the larger context. And every European solution needs to be analyzed for its secondary effects/issues.

It’s all messy and unsure. The perils of witnessing a historical moment. Lots and lots of pieces thrown into the air and where they come down (few are down yet) will start making the picture more clear. My only real piece of advice is that the best tool for analyzing US foreign policy is to assume projection. If the US says some country is doing something, you’ve got a solid 75% probability that that is what the US is doing. I don’t know whether it’s because we lie to ourselves first to lie to the world or if we think everyone is just that dumb. But it’s been consistent for decades.

Posted by: Lex | May 10 2022 19:54 utc | 58

@ pachinko 47, Lex 57
looking for. . .rough guidelines that are likely to lead to correct conclusions more often than to wrong ones
Here's several that coincide with Lex's thoughts:
1. There are many variables at work that we are not completely familiar with, so conclusions are uncalled-for.
2. A good rule comes from Yogi Berra: "It ain't over 'til it's over." (in baseball)
3. It took the mighty US army a full four years to pacify Baghdad against partisans, not an army.
4. So. . .be amused by the details but keep both feet on the ground.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 10 2022 20:04 utc | 59

Posted by: Peter AU1 | May 10 2022 19:18 utc | 49

That appears to be the SOYUZ pipeline which terminates in Hungary.
The shut-off may therefore be a Ukrainian attempt to discipline Hungary for being willing to make payment in rubles.

The shut off also gives notice to other EU states that they want to play nice with 404 else they may also experience a similar shutdown.

Posted by: Sushi | May 10 2022 20:05 utc | 60

i get rt on vancouver island, but no strategic culture...

502 and 404! - thanks @ CPY | May 10 2022 18:48 utc | 34

@ pachinko | May 10 2022 19:13 utc | 47

thanks for your post and honesty... aside from @ Lex | May 10 2022 19:54 utc | 57 response - which i agree with, i would just add that an appreciation for history and how things got to be the way they are here is extremely helpful.. being able to look at small picture - present moment info, verses big picture - geopolitical dynamics for the past 100 years and etc etc - is helpful, but not easily acquired.. and the level of propaganda being unleashed here is also unhelpful and one has to have the critical facilities to be able to navigate thru all of that as well.. it is tricky, so as lex said - most people who i tend to follow, don't have strong confident views on where this is going because no one really knows! that said, i have my own theory and it is this :

we are moving from a unipolar to a multi polar world... the imperialist power at the moment is fading - usa-nato, but they still have huge power to try to maintain their dominance... russia and china and others are looking for a more equitable and fair world here, which is not a world where some dictate to others what is or isn't reality - such as ''international law'' verses the new term ''rules based international order'' and etc. etc.... its complicated... i'll stop here.. keep an open mind and continue to question all that you hear and read.. that is my best advice.. cheers..

Posted by: james | May 10 2022 20:07 utc | 61

Posted by: DutchZ | May 10 2022 18:10 utc | 12

Lithuanian hostioity towards Russia predates World War 2.

Poland and Lituania were once joined in a Commonwealth - what today you would call a federal state - and around 1600 joihtly invaded Russia. Got as far as Moscow before they were driven back.

Poland also supported impostors who claimed the Russian throne. "false Dimitris" - compare Navalny today.

Posted by: Passerby | May 10 2022 20:09 utc | 62

@pachinko #47
There is no hard and fast rule for determining reality vs bullshit, but here are some guidelines:

1) Is the news source credible? This isn't a reputation issue, this is a past performance issue. For me, any source that coughs up garbage twice in a row is forever contaminated and unreliable.
2) Is the breadth and depth of information consistent? I.e. if Russia is losing - why is NATO saying 0 Russian soldiers died between mid-March (when they said 15000 dead) and end of April (when they said 15000 dead again). As you can see, clearly something is not consistent here in this example. Similarly: if there are dead Russian soldiers and destroyed tanks everywhere, where are the pics? Sites like Oryx have been very poor credibility due to their posting of obviously Ukrainian gear labeled as Russian, the same vehicle counted multiple times via different camera angles/times of day, outright fakes from video games, etc etc. Similarly, spectacularly failing Russian military should be accompanied by lots of videos of dead soldiers, surrendered soldiers etc.
3) Is secondary information consistent? For example: if Russia is losing so badly - why are they consistently progressing in terms of clearing out Mariupol, and encircling the Donbas cauldron? Scott Ritter, among others, has also pointed out that it is highly inconsistent that Russia is losing if they - by even NATO reports - are attacking Ukraine with a numerical disadvantage of under 1 to 1 vs. doctrinal 3 to 1 or greater attacker vs. defender ratio.
4) Are claims based on fact or bullshit? The frequent Western MSM reports of "Russia advance stalling" or "Russia behind schedule" or "Russia fails to execute goal of X" - these are all failures based upon some sort of public plan. Does NATO really know what the plan is? The answer is: extremely unlikely based upon public pronouncements by US and EU generals and analysts prior to 2/24/2022.

Note that this doesn't mean Russia hasn't suffered reverses or has been perfect; what it means is that - at least to me - the yakety coming out of MSM is based on bullshit whereas what little we do know from the Russian side is based on Russian MoD announcements and numerous videos posted.

So net net: trust no one. Look at every single piece if information as if the source is lying, and critique it. Use this critique to identify what you think are credible sources, but continually check what those sources say as well.

For example: Scott Ritter has been right and/or sensible about a lot of things, but he has also made both outright errors and incorrect assumptions. Errors include thinking Lira was dead; that the initial "military operation" was shock and awe; that Russia is going all the way to Lviv, etc.

The interesting part for me isn't the "who is winning" part.

It is how the West: US and EU will handle when Ukraine loses.

What the definition of this "losing" is, is still indeterminate but we can safely say that it will include the excision of all of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts; all of the Ukrainian coast shadowing Crimea; and some section of Ukraine north of Donetsk. Will it include Odessa and all access to the Black Sea? Will it include Kharkiv? Will Scott Ritter be right and progress will go all the way to Lviv? Only time will tell.

Posted by: c1ue | May 10 2022 20:16 utc | 63

Posted by: eyeswideopen | May 10 2022 18:56 utc | 39
"I have dozens of videos," said the witness ( Adrien Bouquet, a former soldier who went to Ukraine in April to provide medical help & material to the Ukrainians on the western side).
He also says in the lengthy vid
"Russian soldiers taken prisoner by the Azov battalion were shot in the knees, their officers were shot in the head.
"The European weapons delivered to Lviv (destined for the Azov regiments) had been stored in civilian lodges: this is typical of the use of human shields. Indeed, one young person was killed by the Russian bombs aimed at these weapons.
"Boucha: it was staged. We should also talk about war crimes committed by neo-Nazis.
"I saw many mercenaries, divided into autonomous groups that are made up of Europeans and Americans.
"I can no longer set foot in Ukraine, which I have managed to leave despite the dangerous evidence I have."

Posted by: chb | May 10 2022 20:17 utc | 64

"A man who was in Ukraine is on French radio talking about the Azov battalion's war crimes"

Yes his name is Adrien Bocquet. He went to Ukraine to do humanitarian work and what he saw and heard from Azov mmebers left him speechless. Like "if we come across Jews or Ni@@ers we cut them to pieces".

And yes he did witness the arrival of Russian war prisoners : the simple soldiers were shot in the knees and the officers were shot in the head.

Bocquet DOES have many vids that document these atrocities and he intends to make good use of them.

Naturally he's now banned from going back to Ukraine.

He testified on "Sud Radio" today (2022-05-10) in a show hosted by Andre Bercoff.

Posted by: Nanker | May 10 2022 20:19 utc | 65

That appears to be the SOYUZ pipeline which terminates in Hungary. The shut-off may therefore be a Ukrainian attempt to discipline Hungary for being willing to make payment in rubles.

The shut off also gives notice to other EU states that they want to play nice with 404 else they may also experience a similar shutdown.

Posted by: Sushi | May 10 2022 20:05 utc | 59

Strictly speaking, Soyuz terminates in Slovakia. It meets up with other pipelines at Bar in western 404 (near Uzhgorod), from whence a spur pipeline leads to Hungary. So this closure wouldn't necessarily cut Hungary off.

Myself, I think that 404 is daring this because it knows that any lost transit fees will be more than compensated by gifts or loans from EU/IMF coffers.

Posted by: malenkov | May 10 2022 20:25 utc | 66

I understand not posting large quantities of text but this account by Russian MoD of the losses Ukraine suffered trying to retake Snake Island for a May 9th publicity stunt. should be required reading

I would like to point out that another Ukrainian Bayraktar-TB2 unmanned aerial vehicle have been shot down by Russian air defence means this afternoon near Snake Island.

The Kiev regime has thus lost 30 military UAVs alone in this area over the past three days.

9 of these, I remind you, are Bayraktar-TB2 strike UAVs.

The UAVs were all used in the failed "PR campaign" by the Kiev regime to seize Snake Island on the eve of May 9, the Great Patriotic War Victory Day.

In addition, 3 more bodies of Ukrainian saboteurs nailed from the sea were found by Russian servicemen on the shore today.

Now 27 bodies of Ukrainian special forces and nationalist fighters remain at Snake Island as a result of Kiev's failed operation.

In total, the Kiev regime have lost 3 Su-24 bombers and 1 Su-27 fighter jet near Snake Island during militarily pointless attempt to seize the island.

10 Ukrainian Air Force helicopters have been destroyed. Among them, 3 Mi-8 helicopters with paratroopers on board and 1 Mi-24 support helicopter have been shot down in the air. In addition, 6 more Mi-8 and Mi-24 helicopters involved in the operation have been destroyed on the ground near Artsiz, Odessa Region.

Also 3 Ukrainian Centaur armoured amphibious assault boats with marines on board have been destroyed.

Thus, this adventure ended in disaster for Ukraine. The Kiev regime's mindless PR campaign to seize Snake Island on the eve of Victory Day resulted in the senseless deaths of more than 50 Ukrainian fighters and members of elite AFU units, the loss of 4 aircraft, 10 helicopters, 3 boats and 30 unmanned aerial vehicles.

They died in vain!

Posted by: Ghost Ship | May 10 2022 20:30 utc | 67

Ghost Ship @53--

Mongolia and Russia have a very long history of excellent relations, and Mongolia is also an Observer member of the SCO. This article although 5-years old tells the basic story. Gazprom is currently. Gazprom has a big project underway in Mongolia. From a 2021 PR:

"'The Soyuz Vostok gas pipeline will be an extension of the Russian gas pipeline Power of Siberia 2 on the territory of Mongolia, whose export capacity can be more than 1.3 times above the capacity of the Power of Siberia [gas pipeline]. This will make possible to supply gas from West Siberia for export in huge quantities not merely in the Western, but also in the Eastern direction,' Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller is cited as saying."

Posted by: karlof1 | May 10 2022 20:34 utc | 68

Ghost Ship @66--

Yes, as noted Saturday, at least 100 KIA plus all the equipment and arms. Vain indeed!!

Posted by: karlof1 | May 10 2022 20:37 utc | 69

Kiev planning military action to rescue “its” people from Azovstal? Not at all related to concurrent escalations, perish the thought.

Russia is again gripping the Mariupol steel plant, where hundreds of Ukrainian fighters continue to resist. And where, according to Kiev, there are still 100 civilian refugees underground. The Azov Battalion: "They are using naval artillery, Mlrs rockets, Ur-77, tanks." The former commander: "There is not much time left, we are preparing to save the soldiers"

Repeated airstrikes , more than one per hour on the last day, along with land -based "assault operations" . Russia is again gripping the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol , where hundreds of Ukrainian fighters continue to resist. And where, according to Kiev , there are still 100 civilian refugees underground. The siege of the steel plant, surrounded by troops from Moscow for weeks, has restarted - explained the adviser to the mayor of Mariupol - after a UN convoy left the Donetsk region .

The Russians tried to blow up a bridge used for evacuations , he added, in order to block the last soldiers - belonging to the Azov regiment and a brigade of the Ukrainian Navy - left inside. The Moscow units, claims the battalion with neo-Nazi components, are using "naval artillery, Mlrs rockets , Ur-77, tanks". Through their Telegram channel, the soldiers claim that in the past 24 hours the Russian army has carried out 34 air strikes on the territory of the plant, including 8 with strategic bombers .

A critical situation , aggravated by the presence, according to the adviser to the mayor of Mariupol Petro Andryushchenko , of "at least 100 civilians" still in the shelters: "This does not reduce the density of attacks by the occupiers", he argued. But so far attempts to take the plant - where the Ukrainian flag still flies - have "failed". But time is running out and the Kiev army is working on a military plan to save the fighters, former Azov regimental commander Maxim Zhorin said in an exclusive interview with Channel 24 reported by UNIAN.

The strategy runs in parallel with the diplomatic channels already open. Zhorin announced the preparations for the military operation explaining that they are being developed with the leadership of the Ukrainian armed forces. However, he explained, it will first be necessary to complete the military equipment and the supply of weapons . "I'm not sure that the fighters on Azovstal territory currently have that much time, so we are preparing and working in parallel in two directions: diplomatic and military to get them out," he said. The operation "could be in several stages by grouping the units" barricaded in the plant.

Posted by: anon2020 | May 10 2022 20:38 utc | 70

The press release of the Ukrainian operator says that they have suspended the transit from the Sokhranivka compressor station because it is in an area controlled by the Russians (I think Lugansk).
But he adds that "in accordance with the terms of the agreement, it is possible to temporarily transfer unavailable capacity from the physical point of Sokhranivka connection to the physical point of Sudzha connection located in the territory controlled by Ukraine."
Nothing should change .....

Posted by: FZappa | May 10 2022 20:38 utc | 71

Posted by: vetinLA | May 10 2022 17:54 utc | 4

"Ya' gotta' love consistency. Virtually all U$A MSM, following the same BS stories about Ukraine, with absolutely no mention of the U$A's culpability in starting, and continuing the war..."

consistency is indeed the curse of the commonplace.

In these interesting times I follow the digital, email, written, radio and TV newsfeeds from several countries, just to get a handle on the mighty Wurlitzer propaganda messaging being pushed.

Of course, b at this bar, together with much barfly input supplies a necessary reality check or should I say antidote to the MSM poison.

The MSM messaging looks like pure advocacy journalism written from a central boiler house. We all need finely tuned BS detector antennas for the universal deceit which should now be becoming unavoidable to notice by the population.

Context and history is ignored in MSM propaganda along with the starting point of any conflict.

Posted by: Paul | May 10 2022 20:40 utc | 72

Posted by: c1ue | May 10 2022 20:16 utc | 62

I would add to your list the practice of learning to read between the lines or even just critically analyze what is being said. Also any article that has a "?" in the headline, lol.

Does Putin Have Cancer?

Will Putin Declare Martial Law?

Is Russia Losing the War?


Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 10 2022 20:42 utc | 73

Re: Ukraine gas cutoff
I suspect the reason is far more prosaic: I would not be surprised if the cutoff is because transit fees accrue from readouts at various pumping stations - and that the loss of the Luhansk pumping station means loss of access to this data and possibly even accrual of transit fees (for that leg) to the Luhansk Republic...

Posted by: c1ue | May 10 2022 20:44 utc | 74

Could some barstool warrior who's able to access Strat. Culture please post non S.C. links to the daily articles? I believe most of the authors have other sites at which their work is posted.

Posted by: NOBTS | May 10 2022 20:46 utc | 75

I am in the early stages of possible disintegration of a 20+ yr friendship. My friend is native Italian and well educated. He and his wife are sheltering 3 Ukr women in It.

We agreed to view the movie set in Maidan in 2014 and I agreed to read a book he rec "Ukraine: What Everyone Needs to Know" by Serhy Yekelchyk (2nd printing 2020).

Has anyone read this book? Care to comment?

I read the recent history parts and feel the author tracked pretty well but with much added filler that diminished the current reality as I see it. Omissions of US involvement and RF patience were notably missing. He starts off with much ancient history that seemed irrelevant and caused me to put it down twice.

Another question: Is 1918 a reasonable date to start from for a longer historical look? 1989 for a more recent look? I remember GHWB, Reagan & Gorbachev.

I am at the point of exchanging articles that support a fair reading of the "facts".

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
My goal is not to be an expert, but continue a friendship, while not dodging reality.

Thanks to b and all the commenters here who have raised my awareness. It like reading a good book with lots of conversation and flowing topics. Hard to sign off.

Posted by: Michael | May 10 2022 20:52 utc | 76

@ pachinko | May 10 2022 19:13 utc | 47

If you need verification that the fighting started before the Russian operation you only need to go to the OSCE official website and check out the daily ceasefire violation reports for the week leading up to the RF invasion. Ask yourself why the massive increase in artillery attacks on the Donbass went unreported in the western media. You might also look up the Minsk agreements and ask yourself why they were never implemented and why the western media don't cover that subject. Those and various other subjects can be used to confirm that the RF account of who started the conflict is far more honest than the NATO one.

As for who is going to win, as you said yourself, opinion is divided.

Most commenters here would probably agree that the RF would win easily against an unsupported Ukraine and that the RF is not going to be stopped by economic means. After that it gets complicated..

NATO support for Ukraine is a given, some hold that will it stop short of direct military conflict with the RF, some are of the opinion that NATO will continue to up the ante regardless.

Some hold that the RF can win a conventional war, even against the whole of NATO. Those people are usually of the opinion that the conflict will be resolved quickly. People who expect a much longer conflict are usually more pessimistic, noting that the longer a conflict takes the more likely that factors like manpower and production capacity will be the deciding factors.

Nuclear weapons are also a factor of course. Opinions vary as to whether either side is likely to resort to nuclear weapons if they are losing, obviously that opinion is inextricably connected to their view of how the conventional war is likely to play out. Some are of the opinion that nukes will not be used regardless or that one side or the other will back down in response to a tactical nuclear strike, others are more pessimistic.

I have tried to make this a neutral summary of the various viewpoints , I hope I succeeded.

Posted by: MarkU | May 10 2022 20:53 utc | 77

The US is an empire and hegemon, whose reach and influence has been greatly strengthened by Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in itself a highly predictable outcome of decades of NATO expansion to the very borders of Russia with obviously no equivalent expansion of Russian influence in the Americas, let alone the US's literal borders. Being an empire the US must as a matter of course curtail democratic decisionality, especially on matters that pertain to its very viability as an empire (China and Russia do the same, though obviously much more egregiously). US imperial grand strategy extends beyond and beneath any single presidential administration or party's hold on office, this has especially been the case since 9/11.

Previous presidential administrations have been considerate enough to explain to the American people that one of the principal goals of US foreign policy in the following decades will be containment of Chinese power and influence in the Pacific and Eurasian regions. It seems that China is far too autonomous and its economy is a clear rival to the US's. China-containment is obviously a highly complex multi-pronged affair, but the military dimension is obviously a key element (hence the justification for continuing increases in already gargantuan Pentagon budget). On the other hand, plutocracy which, according to Princeton University, has mastery of the political process in the US, is not willing to cede any of its influence and power to reduce working and middle class stagnation and precaritization, a multi-decadal "malaise" that has seen real wages remain stagnant for nearly half a century. Under such political/socioeconomic circumstances it makes perfect sense for a seemingly populist right-wing authoritarianism to become ascendent in the US (obviously there was a foretaste of this with Trump's presidency). Said authoritarianism can either signal a genuine economic transformation (modernization, industrialization, mass employment), as in the case of Franco, Mussolini, Mao, etc., or it in itself can be a bourgeois strategy of distraction and dispersion of working and middle class political energies, a function that can be ascribed to the "radical" wings of two major parties in the US.

On the left one has Wokism, which has no economic achievements to its name, on the right Trumpism, which seemed to herald a type of economic growth that may have ultimately been so much smoke and mirrors (and which a cynic would say the collapse of which was opportunistically concealed under the disruptions of the pandemic--controlled economic demolition). What other recourse remains for the bourgeoisie-controlled Deep State, in a yet absent defeat of China and the cancellation of US debt to same, save for a rising socio-political authoritarianism at home, that is synergistically coupled with a forerun of intensified conflict with China in the form of proxy war with Russia, including the attendant cancellation of debts to the latter or, what amounts to the same, confiscation of all Russian sovereign wealth held in dollars or Euros (in dynamic and continuous fashion for years to come)?

Ultimately, in order for the US imperial order (with its attendant Western satellites--NATO) to survive, both Russia and China--but fundamentally the latter--must be defeated in a hybrid war that, according to the MSM itself, has already officially begun. Doubtless a key aim of said war as it relates to China, is reorganization of US debt to China or an equivalent confiscation of Chinese sovereign wealth held in dollars or Euros. Such scenarios were previously considered unthinkable, but this is precisely what the US and EU did in effect to Russia by confiscating all of the latter's sovereign wealth held in their respective currencies. Such an event is already extraordinary and is a likely harbinger of an expanding hybrid war footing for years to come; on the "home front" a socio-political authoritarianism that shadows what might well become a titanic struggle between two rival economic hegemons seems only the most natural of outcomes.

Posted by: MallardB | May 10 2022 21:00 utc | 78

@Posted by: Republicofscotland | May 10 2022 19:23 utc | 51

Ukraine's 2021 Eurovision Contest Song was a very avant grade interpretation of a traditional Ukrainian folk song. You can nearly imagine Azov battalion members replacing the dancers, plus Zelensky in his leather attire.

Iceland's song was very "different", just like Iceland.

Mussolini may have enjoyed the Italian winner

Something to lighten up the dreary darkness of current events.

Posted by: Roger | May 10 2022 21:07 utc | 79

pachinko | May 10 2022 19:13 utc | 47

A couple of documents that I think are required reading to help understand what is occurring now are the Russia - China joint statement and the Russian security proposals to the US and Nato. also all the material - documents, transcripts ect you can find on Russia's attempts to gain security agreements with US/Europe over the years. As for Ukraine - the history of the OUN and US involvement.
For an understanding of the military aspect Martyanov, Ritter, Macgreggor ect.
Martyanov is an ex soviet naval officer and has a very good understanding of Russian military
Some of the talking head videos are very good for gaining an understanding of how the Russian military functions.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | May 10 2022 21:10 utc | 80

Well looking at Peter's map of the pipeline (thanks Peter) it seems that the places most affected are Kharkov and Odessa, (and Crimea) because there is limited alternative supply. This suggests to me that the Ukrainians assume they are soon to lose control over these places or that major attacks on them are imminent.

Or of course that the Ukrainians are just stupid - a real possibility.

Posted by: watcher | May 10 2022 21:16 utc | 81

Google Translate

Sokhranivka is part of the Soyuz pipeline, which runs from the Russian region of Orenburg to Uzhhorod in Ukraine. The partial transit stop is to apply from 7:00 a.m. local time (6:00 a.m. CEST).
Main route for Russian gas is Nord Stream 1
The contractual maximum capacity for Ukrainian gas transit to Europe is 109 million cubic meters per day. The main route for Russian gas to Europe, however, is the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 1. According to Russian information, 60 billion cubic meters of gas per year ran through Nord Stream 1 to Europe.

Posted by: Bastille | May 10 2022 21:17 utc | 82

Sushi | May 10 2022 20:05 utc | 59

I haven't been able to find exactly where the pumping station is located - if it has been under Russian control since the start of the operation or somewhere near the current frontlines.

When it comes to a cultural hatred of Russia, UK elite seem to lead the pack which I wondered if the current move was the purpose of Johnson's visit.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | May 10 2022 21:17 utc | 83

Google Translate

Sokhranivka is part of the Soyuz pipeline, which runs from the Russian region of Orenburg to Uzhhorod in Ukraine. The partial transit stop is to apply from 7:00 a.m. local time (6:00 a.m. CEST).
Main route for Russian gas is Nord Stream 1
The contractual maximum capacity for Ukrainian gas transit to Europe is 109 million cubic meters per day. The main route for Russian gas to Europe, however, is the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 1. According to Russian information, 60 billion cubic meters of gas per year ran through Nord Stream 1 to Europe.

Posted by: La Bastille | May 10 2022 21:19 utc | 84

Micheal @74,

Maybe a touch further back to catch the machinations of the Austria-Hungarian empire. But really it only gets more complicated the further you go back.

There are plenty of heroes the Ukrainian state could have chosen to be a symbol of an independent Ukraine. Some of them have problematic attributes like all founding hero types. But in the end Ukraine settled on Bandera. That’s the telling thing. A man so psychopathic that even the Nazis didn’t want to deal with him regardless of his pledges of fealty to Hitler. Why Bandera is the question to ask. Given his ideology and behavior, why would the Ukrainian state chose him to represent the nation?

An interesting read so far is here:

It covers how the idea of Ukraine has been formed, though only three chapters posted so far. I’ve found that the conversation with people is difficult because they can’t/won’t separate the people of Ukraine with the Ukrainian government’s policies going back to the Orange Revolution. This moment allows them to ignore that with all the supposed support of Europe and the US since 1991, the lives of ordinary Ukrainians has gotten progressively worse. There’s neither knowledge of that nor concern over it.

Posted by: Lex | May 10 2022 21:23 utc | 85

@MarkU #75
You said

Some hold that the RF can win a conventional war, even against the whole of NATO. Those people are usually of the opinion that the conflict will be resolved quickly. People who expect a much longer conflict are usually more pessimistic, noting that the longer a conflict takes the more likely that factors like manpower and production capacity will be the deciding factors.

There is no question whatsoever that the Russian army could defeat any combination of European NATO attacks. Germany's entire military is about the size of the Russian 1st Tank Army all by itself.

I also disagree mightily with your (admittedly short) summary.

My view is that Russia is not exerting even a majority of its overall combat power in Ukraine. What I see happening is that a core of 60K professional Russian troops, plus another approx. 60K Russian troops essentially in blocking positions - the rest of the combat troops being various Donetsk, Luhansk militias, Chechen and other basically volunteer Russian national guard units and volunteers. And furthermore, the heaviest/riskiest infantry combat is by these militias and volunteers.

Furthermore, what I see happening is that Russia is executing a strategy which can run literally forever: it doesn't need to finish by any given date or upon a given objective. Russia is going to keep going until it achieves its stated goals of demilitarization and deNazification - whether this is accomplished entirely by force of arms or a negotiated settlement is irrelevant to the ongoing execution.

Nor am I the least bit impressed by Western "aid". The fact is that the Javelins, Stingers and other gear provided - 95% plus of it are clearly junk that has been sitting in US and EU military warehouses for 2 decades or more. Stingers have not been produced literally since the early 2000s. Javelins were first fielded in 1989; while I am sure US troops have the latest version, I am equally certain that Ukraine got the 1980s leftovers with wonky batteries, unstable warheads and what not. Nor is the US the only country shipping junk: one of the first German shipments of "weapons" were the shipment of all of Germany's Strela missiles. These Strela antiaircraft Manpads were first fielded in 1964 and are a literal Warsaw Pact weapon. The report I read literally said that at least 1/4 were not even operational and had been decommissioned because they were considered actively dangerous to use. b himself wrote about the combat power of the "Gepard".
What I see is the military bureaucracies of the US, EU, UK and others dumping their on-the-book junk to Ukraine for which they can then claim "usage or losses" and get more money to spend on new gear. The cash given the Ukraine - I would be shocked if no part of this was redirected to "make up" for the above "losses", with other portions given the various formerly Warsaw Pact, but now EU members, dumping their Soviet era junk. The US also has dumped all of the gear formerly earmarked for the Ghani Afghanistan government to Ukraine: artillery, MRAPs etc - more turning shit into daisies.
None of this spells "victory" to me, much less CIA Stingers to mujahideen in the 1980s. The Stinger was developed in 1981, so Osama and friends were using literal state of the art gear then vs. Ukrainians today using 40 years old tech.

Posted by: c1ue | May 10 2022 21:24 utc | 86

Posted by: CPY | May 10 2022 18:48 utc | 34

When Russia is done, Ukraine will be known as code 410: Gone.


Posted by: CharlesLutherThanos | May 10 2022 21:28 utc | 87

NOBTS @73--

I see you're making this request again. Here's where most of Crooke's articles can be found, many having slightly different titles and some that were never published by SC. Escobar gets republished at many sites, but I don't think he's one you need. Declan Hayes is new to SC and some of his work can be found here along with many others. Gee, just discovered that Matthew Ehret and Cynthia Chung are married from her Substack page where he also has a page. Tom Luongo has his own blog, although I disagree with him more often than not. Robert Bridge is being published by RT quite often nowadays. Martin Jay has no website that I could unearth or other publication I could find.

If you have others that I overlooked, see what you can find. Strategic Culture also has this VK page where it provides a short synopsis of its articles but links them to its website. Happy Surfing!!

Posted by: karlof1 | May 10 2022 21:29 utc | 88

@Posted by: Sushi | May 10 2022 19:36 utc | 54

Thanks for the excellent insights. The US is very much now an agent of chaos, trying to forestall the rise China and the rest via a scorched earth policy - if they can't dominate a region/country they will destroy it. The war aims for Ukraine seem to be to (i) undermine Russia by sanctions and extended war (ii) force the Russians to destroy the Ukraine and turn the people against it through that destruction by keeping the Ukrainians supported "just enough" (iii) disconnect Russia from Europe and the rest of the world, even if that means severely damaging Europe. They are failing in (i), working really hard to produce (ii) and have failed (iii) with respect to the rest of the world. The US plus a deeply damaged Europe will be no match for China+Russia+Iran etc., so the attempted destruction by the US of what it can't have will continue.

Brian Berletic at his youtube channel The New Atlas, has covered the US attempts to destabilize the ASEAN nations, he recently started covering Ukraine as well.

I used to be a software development manager, so understand your comment with respect to the talent walking out the door each night. With respect to shit, you may be interested in this:

Posted by: Roger | May 10 2022 21:30 utc | 89

If Hungary is being blackmailed, it may be to prevent Hungary vetoing Finland's admission to NATO.

Posted by: Lysias | May 10 2022 21:34 utc | 90

karlof1 | May 10 2022 19:20 utc | 50 et al

Yes! Michael Hudson on with Norton. Magnificient analysis!

Easily digestible if listen closely to get each of MH's words. It is over 1 hour of vital data by MH, who fully understands and is also able to clearly express his we can understand, too.

i repeat your link

Posted by: chu teh | May 10 2022 21:39 utc | 91

404: as far as I know, this Ukro nickname is credited to Andrei Martianov

Posted by: Ricardo Ramirez | May 10 2022 21:39 utc | 92

@ MarkU | May 10 2022 18:24 utc | 18

I also live in the UK and the RT site has been down for me for a couple of days. I get, "This site can’t provide a secure connection" when I go there. The android app works on my tablet, though, so it's not too bad.

Posted by: D J G | May 10 2022 21:40 utc | 93

@ Republicofscotland | May 10 2022 18:42 utc | 31

Thanks for the alternate RT links, which work for me in the UK.

Posted by: D J G | May 10 2022 21:44 utc | 94

Did someone read the last report by Amnesty International about Ukraine?

Frightening. I mean the corruption of AI is frightening.

Posted by: Olivier | May 10 2022 21:46 utc | 95

re M Hudson...he doesn't babble. He knows the definition of each word he selects. He analyses carefully using scientific methods, then chooses each word to communicate accurately and effectively.

What a pleasure! What an education!

Posted by: chu teh | May 10 2022 21:48 utc | 96

Posted by: pachinko | May 10 2022 19:13 utc | 47
"As someone with no military experience and understanding beyond what is sometimes shown in movies and video games (which probably has zero relationship to reality)"

First, listen to Andrei Martyanov's video from Monday:
Surprise, Not!

As he points out, everything you hear on MSM is from the vantage point of people who know nothing about war except what they see in the movies - which is utterly divorced from reality of peer adversary modern warfare. And that includes all the ex-US military officers pontificating because they've never been in a modern peer-to-peer war.

"What kind of "indicators" are there that are speaking for one outcome and against the other?"

The primary indicator is that the ground Russia and the LDR controls continues to grow. Any map, even one that is anti-Russian, has to show that. But maps are not important otherwise. In war, units move about according to strategic, operational and tactical reasons, and unless you have accurate intelligence as to why, you can't determine why from afar. You have to have direct military intelligence, which no one outside of Ukraine has - unless you're a professional military intelligence department - and they aren't telling what they know, it's all propaganda.

I do believe the daily Russian Ministry of Defense briefings for the most part. After you've seen a month of those, you can understand why they are not losing if even ten percent of it is true.

Also, look at the military balance between the two countries. There is no chance in hell that Russia can lose this. Ukraine is the second largest army in Europe after Turkey, and Russia is destroying it using only ten percent of its readily available military power.

"sometimes it feels to me that everyone's just talking out of their asses to pass the time (not this fine blog of course - it's been more right than wrong throughout the past so it must be doing something right)."

Correct. They are. That mostly includes me. But I have read quite a bit about war in the past, if not the present form of war. The rest of what I say is based on logic.

As for reliable sources, there aren't any. Martyanov would be one - but he doesn't do it. He only talks generalities.

The only other people who have the military background to understand - or at least speculate accurately - what is going on would be people like Scott Ritter and Colonel Douglas Macgregor. And even they don't know for sure what is happening.

I can tell you that the only source I trust - to the degree that I trust anything, and my motto has always been "Trust No One" - is b at this blog. I also tend to believe Andrei Raevsky, The Saker, because he also has military background. There's a guy there, Nightvision, who does pretty good sitreps, but even he is just an amateur.

You just have to deal with it. The one thing you can be sure of is that the Russian General Staff would have to be morons to lose this based on the military balance - and as Martyanov says, the Russian General Staff is the best in the world and has been for centuries. "There are no surprises" as he says in that video I referenced.

Posted by: CharlesLutherThanos | May 10 2022 21:50 utc | 97

Posted by: D J G | May 10 2022 21:40 utc | 91

Try Opera. It has an embedded VPN. RT is also not available here with FF, but with Opera it is OK.

Last RT news for instance:

"Ukraine turns off Europe-bound gas
US intelligence estimates Russia’s plans for Ukraine
Sanctions hurt US more than Russia – poll
EU nation sees highest inflation in decades"
And so on...

Only good news!

Posted by: Olivier | May 10 2022 21:51 utc | 98

what is the average American thinking about this, God only knows

My first post here.

I am beyond disgusted with the behavior of this country and so many people in it.

Anybody who thinks "we" stand with Ukraine is on drugs.

Posted by: Michigan Dude | May 10 2022 21:51 utc | 99

Thanks to Lex, Don Bacon, james, c1ue and MarU for replies so far!

I know some of the backstory leading up to this (Maidan, Crimea, Minsk agreements, ceasefire violations, rejection of Dec 2021 "ultimatum") and given Putin's behavior in the past feel that Russia wouldn't have started this if they felt there were still other ways of ensuring Ukraine won't end up as an armed US puppet right on their doorstep. I don't really buy the "denazify" argument - the problem is that the Nazis in Ukraine are anti-Russia, armed to the teeth and run considerable parts of the country, not that they are Nazis and share repulsive beliefs - and Russia is trying to get through war what it couldn't get through diplomacy: a Ukraine that poses no military threat to Russia. Don't know what to make of the ethical/national arguments, but to me Ukranians and Russians are alike enough I can't tell them apart (and I'm sure most of the non-Ukranian pro-Ukrainists can't either).

Re-reading my original post @47 I realize that "victory" was a rather loaded term in this context: I don't believe Ukraine can win militarily against the Russian forces (which makes the question of military victory less relevant) but am afraid of the gyrations the west will take in still declaring it a victory. So far western sanctions on Russia seem to have only backfired and outside of the "International Community (C)" no-one is willing to shoot their feet for a country like Ukraine (and they most probably have some backstory with the US, which is bound to make them extra weary). Somehow I feel this'll end up turning the EU into one gigantic Ukraine to serve US interests and reestablish something akin to a new Iron Curtain at Russia's European borders. The way Russia is singled out and demonized in the west right now is unprecedented, but the west is also known for forgetting quickly and pretending nothing has happened (well, Russia won't, but our experts probably don't know that yet).

"The perils of witnessing a historical moment"... peril alright, living in an era where most people around you come across as mindless robots surely did increase my alcohol consumption :D

Posted by: pachinko | May 10 2022 21:52 utc | 100

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